Registered User
Oct 1, 2006
Hi all
I just wondered if anyone could help.
My husband who has never swore in his life has started to come out with some real bad language usually as he is getting ready for bed, he dos`nt know I know about this and I am usually the one he is swearing about.
Just wondered if anyone had come across this


Registered User
May 19, 2006
Dear Roseann,
my aunty didn't swear during any stage of the illness. My nan did occasionally, and we were mortified because this was a gentle, kind, loving woman who never EVER used bad language. But in the nursing home where both my nan and gramps were there were a few ladies and gentlemen who used the foulest of foul language towards relatives, carers and visitors. The staff dealt with it in the nicest possible way, and we all knew it was the illness that caused them to lose all inhibitions. They didn't know half the time that they were doing it. But the words I heard in there sometimes made me blush...and I'm no prude.

One of the men was particularly bad and on one occasion when I was taking to a nurse in the same room, she said "I used to know him before he got ill...he was a teacher and the gentlest, kindest, politest and most considerate man. He would be mortified if he knew what he was saying." He just couldn't help it...he didn't seem to have any control over it. Sometimes it seemed as though he was really angry, and it might have been his way of venting his frustration in this situation when, in former times, he would have been able to use different, slightly more refined words.

Not much help, Roseann, but just to say it does seem to happen and doesn't seem to be uncommon.

Best wishes, Tina


Registered User
Nov 28, 2005
Hello Roseann:

My husband never swore prior to dementia. Although as yet it is not foul language I do notice that everything is b..... this or bl.... that. Even in Church!!

My brother who has MS in a NH is the same but probably much worse than my husband as he comes out with very embarassing phrases.

I just knew these two fellows before illness overtook them so I let it all go over my head now. :D:D

Best wishes Jan


Registered User
Oct 1, 2006
Thanks for your replies ladies
I will try and let it go over my head but I have to smile as when he was working my husband used to say as soon as you start to swear you have lost the arguement.
So I think it`s just another thing to get used too.
All the best Roseann

Grannie G

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 3, 2006

Dhiren doesn`t swear but my ex-neighbour resorted to Barrack Room language when I looked after him.

Previously he was such a gentleman, raised his hat to whoever he met in the street. When dementia set in he was so vulgar, even the NH staff, when he finally went into a home, remarked on his language.

He remained gentle though in spite of his language.


Registered User
May 8, 2007
My dad would tell everyone off for using bad language in front of ladies and children, although I was told that when he was with the men having a pint he would 'f and blind'! I've just got back from the nursing home and during my visit he called me a 'c' and he used the f word loads of times. I just try my hardest to remember the man he was rather than how he is now the AD had taken hold. My dad was always and remains a gentleman in my eyes :).


Registered User
Jan 31, 2004
near London
Jan never ever swore, to my knowledge, then one day when she was fairly advanced in her dementia, she came out with a single oscene word.

I stopped talking in mid stream of conversation and my eyes must have bulged a bit.

"There", she said "that got your attention, didn't it?"

She never ever swore again. Just that one word in a lifetime!

It goes with the territory, to a greater or lesser extent, I believe.


Registered User
Aug 20, 2006
It's common. It's because gradually social inhibitions are forgotten, this may also be alongside changes in personality as well.

My dad swears a lot and is very often in a foul mood, but then he's not really my dad any more except in body.

It's also the case that family and friends take the brunt, because a vestige of socialistion remains when in the company of strangers.


Registered User
Jan 9, 2008
just to agree with the others really.
It is common. Happens more in the evening when dad is tired and disorientated. He also hallucinates and is angry/confused with the people he sees.
The advice we read is to give them a few minutes alone until the calm down. Not always easy but sometimes you can save your breath and avoid an argument!
best wishes.

Jodie Lucas

Registered User
Dec 3, 2005
Hi there,

Just adding to other comments really. I worked in dementia care for four years and we did have a client who would wander the building swearing. His wife was shocked when staff told her, and she said that he must be copying the staff! However there was a meeting, which he attended, and he swore there as well. In my experience it seemd to happen fairly often... but varies on the choice of words.



Registered User
Feb 17, 2006
I always wonder why also then read up in a book about Alzheimer's

that the normal brain has an has an inbuilt mechanism which tell us the difference between appropriate and inappropriate behavior and language, When certain areas of the brain are affected by dementia or another disease , this mechanism is impaired. Swearing may be the only way in which a person can express anger, anxiety , pain or discomfort.

it also adds that you may find it useful to ask a CPN
(community psychiatric nurse )or other heath professional to help you to find out whether there are any particular situation that appear to trigger of they bad language , so then you may be able to help them to avoid these situation
Last edited:

Canadian Joanne

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 8, 2005
Toronto, Canada
When my mother was still speaking, she did swear a fair bit when she was agitated. She also used racist terms and made derogatory remarks about people's appearance.

Naturally, this was all due to the AD. Just try and let it flow over you. My mother told me to f... off a number of times. I got quite used to it. It's just the disease, not our loved ones.


Registered User
Mar 15, 2007
West London
When my partner Alan was still living at home with me and coping, with difficulty, with daily living, he went through several weeks/months of being very angry and every other word was a swear word, which I found very wearing. I said to my sister that he was suffering from "late onset Tourette's syndrome"!

This phase passed, however, and by the time he went into his care home he was polite and compliant. But on two occasions in the home I managed to annoy him by trying to make him do something he didn't want to and he told me to f...... off. When I mentioned this to carers they expressed shock and said that Alan never swore.

Contrarily, I felt happy that he was still able to distinguish between me, his nearest and dearest, at whom he could safely swear, and the staff to whom it would be inappropriate to use bad language. And I felt pleased that he still had the spirit to stand his ground against me.

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